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Day 5: Rock Climbing in Vang Vieng

Rock On!!

Despite the prevalence of free wi-fi signs everywhere, actual connectivity has been tenuous at best so far in Vang Vieng. Breakfast this morning was no different. Apparently, there was wi-fi, but the internet did not seem to be working. Fortunately, breakfast was facing the karst peaks right by the riverside. Listening to the water running and admiring the view while eating my breakfast was a great start to the day. In the distance a big hot air balloon wafted about the valley. Even with all this tranquility, I was excited.

I’ve ended the day, tired, exhausted, sore muscles and cuts all over my hands and forearms BUT with a big smile on my face. I’m ready to sleep, but it’s been an extraordinary day. I was excited this morning as it’s been about 8 years since I last went rock-climbing. Today I had the opportunity to climb at the base of these majestic peaks.

I was with 2 other experienced climbers and our magnificent guide Kong. Between the 3 of them, they made me nervous about climbing in front of them! Kong was an excellent guide, showed me the basics again and gave excellent advice whenever I needed it about where to place my hands and feet.

We were situated in a secret haven with the climbing terrain all to ourselves. We did four different climbs in the morning and it felt good to be climbing again! Then it was time for lunch!

Our excellent guide Kong, turned into a masterchef by barbequing meat skewers over charcoal for our tasty lunch, with fried rice and a small baguette to boot. After lunch, we all felt sleepy, so Kong had some easy climbs planned for us. They were great and interesting climbs, but I kept forgetting how sharp the limestone could be and hence have ended up with many scrapes from gripping the limestone a little too tight from my messy moves.

The second last climb had a real challenge 2/3 of the way up. I’d seen a beginner attempt it and get stuck. I was determined to attempt it clean. But at that point where we all struggled, my arms suddenly gave way and I was swinging on the rope. I quickly got back on the face and did what the beginner did, take a rest on a conveniently locate tree root that was in the middle of the climb. Kong was patiently giving many instructions as to how to climb up. After much exasperation, pulling, pushing and a lot of supportive noises and advice from my fellow climbers, I made it over the difficult part and to the top – exasperated!

As a last farewell, we decided to attempt a very difficult overhang. It looked hard and the moves Kong made to climb it were so impressive, there was no way I thought that I could replicate it. And I couldn’t. But it was a good attempt and I was happy to have tried! It has been a great day, full of adrenalin and beautiful scenery. I don’t know how well I’m going to kayak and trek tomorrow to the caves!

Rock Climbing in Vang Vieng, Laos

Rock Climbing in Vang Vieng, Laos

Posted by Teamworkz 03:57 Archived in Laos

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